It takes more than words and policies. It takes management actively championing ethical reasoning skills and an ethical operating culture.
There is a nexus between ethics, cultural practices, and corporate responsibility.
- It is not sufficient to just have an ethics or corporate responsibility policy. If that was all it took, Enron would still be flying high.
- Culture failure is one of the leading preventable business expenses, yet it gets the least investment in prevention.
- Culture failure is a leading cause of failing to meet one’s corporate responsibilities to basic governance, environmental and community obligations.
- Real ethics and corporate responsibility depend on ethical reasoning skills and cultural practices, not policy.
- Ethics policies often cannot be logically applied to every situation uniformly. Yet corporations expect them to be followed absolutely and tend to enforce them selectively.
- Bad ethics policies can actually cause unethical behavior to emerge in organizations.
- Unethical behavior is caused by the convergence of reasoning flaws, attitudes, pressure and opportunity.
- Severe forms of frustration in the organization are symptoms of ethics and culture failure.
- Managerial action to merely deal with symptoms of frustration, instead of preventing its root causes, usually makes the culture failure worse than if nothing had been done at all.
Do you want to just appear to have corporate responsibility, or do you want to truly have corporate responsibility?
Is your ethics policy effective?
Read this and find out.